Shotgun and remote working

I’ve heard from at least one client that in the interest in self-isolation, they’re having their studio’s employees work from home, and are wondering about solutions that can facilitate this on the Shotgun side.

We’re very sympathetic to this situation (much of the Shotgun team work from home, so we’re offering tips on keeping your wits about you here). Our distributed configuration setup for Toolkit is designed for remote workers, and I’ll go into some of its details here.

There are a few different paths to explore here:

  • A distributed config is designed for remote work. You upload your pipeline configuration to your Shotgun site, and when users select a project in Desktop or Create, or launch a DCC from the entity action menus in the browser, the config is cached locally on their machine, and they’re able to work with all of the tools in your pipeline configuration. More on distributed vs. centralized configs here.
  • If you have custom apps, you can store them in a bundle_cache/ folder within your uploaded config (more on that here) or upload them individually and refer to them within your config with descriptors of type shotgun.
  • Distributed configs manage the process of distributing tools for your pipeline, but distributing work files is outside the scope of the product. I know that other studios have used Aspera or other services; there’s a conversation about that in the shotgun-dev group
  • Having said that, if you can ensure that the storage root paths are exactly the same for each user (or at least one path per OS), then things (reading/writing workfiles, publishes, etc.) should just work.
  • Finally, there is some logic built into the Loader for resolving published file paths via environment variable or file:// URLs. You can read about that here.

Please let us know if you have any questions. If we can help you in any way, we’d love to do so.

If you have tips from your studio on using Toolkit (or Shotgun as a whole) for remote work, please chime in! Your expertise will help the community through some undeniably strange days.


Not surprisingly, we’ve gotten quite a few posts about this topic in the past few days. I’m going to keep this list updated, so this can be a starting point:

1 Like

Will be nice to see a practicalweb-seminar and how to do it from a on going centralized project and for a new project from scrath. It´s #covid19 times…
Thanks for the list!


We’ve made a post today about how to turn a centralized configuration into a distributed one. There’s even a script that automates part of the process.
Hopefully this can help you out.